Delegates who attended the Small European Postal Administration Cooperations’ (Sepac) conference, hosted by Isle of Man Post Office, are hailing it a huge success.
Last week more than 14 delegates representing small postal administrations from around Europe including Aland, Malta, Luxembourg, Faroe Islands, Channel Islands, Gibraltar and the Vatican visited the Island for a two-day forum held at the Sefton Hotel, Douglas. The event was sponsored by security printers Lowe-Martin and Cartor, Joh Enschedé, a leading producer of postage stamps and supplies to more than 60 countries, Marini, a company established in Italy which produces high quality stamp albums for many countries worldwide as well as and Stanley Gibbons, the world’s longest established rare stamp merchant.
The forum was by invitation only and allows Sepac members to share experiences and gain knowledge from their counterparts from across Europe. The members meet once a year to discuss topical issues and challenges as each postal administration considers how the industry will develop in the future.
There was a varied programme with some very interesting speakers. Sessions covered customer care, high tech engraving, management and safety of stocks, additional services and products to how the postal market evolves to name but a few. They were presented by a variety of key speakers and proved invaluable in bringing together a wealth of experience and knowledge for all the attendees to benefit from, as well as a number of enlightening question and answer sessions.
Within the event programme, Isle of Man Post Office took advantage of the opportunity to showcase the Isle of Man to the visiting delegates with trips to Laxey, the south of the Island and a visit to the Tynwald Ceremony so they could see how it differs from their respective homelands. The group also had free time to explore the Island at their leisure. Isle of Man Post Office is grateful to the Department of Economic Development and Isle of Man Railways for their support.
Commenting on the forum Emile Espen, Chairman of Sepac and Head of Philately, Post Luxembourg, said: “I’m quite sure that I speak on behalf of all the participants to the Sepac conference, when I say that this year’s conference was a complete success. We had interesting topics on our agenda and fruitful discussions. Isle of Man Post Office had organised the meeting facilities and the social programme perfectly. Unfortunately we were only able to discover to a small extent the beauties of the Island and the rich Manx cultural heritage but I’m sure that all participants enjoyed their short stay on the Isle of Man.”
Maxine Cannon, General Manager Stamps & Coins, Isle of Man Post Office, said: “We were delighted to host the conference for the first time in our history. We have been inundated with positive feedback from the delegates about the forum which is very pleasing. Sepac was established back in 1999 and we are delighted to have been a member of the cooperation since its inception. Coming together on an annual basis is very worthwhile for us all, it allows us to take a step back from our day-to day-activities, view the wider picture and the current trends which are creating both challenges and exciting opportunities for our industry. The event timing could not have been better as I review the five year strategy for Stamps & Coins as part of the overall business strategy.”
She added: “We hope Sepac continues to be a valuable cooperation for many years to come and are grateful to all the members for taking the time to visit our Island during Manx National Week.”
Photo - The Sepac delegates accompanied by Julie Edge MHK, Chairman of Isle of Man Post Office.